Iowa DOT News

CarFit event for senior drivers set for May 16

DES MOINES, Iowa – April 25, 2012 – To promote safe senior driving, the Iowa Department of Transportation will host a CarFit event at the Iowa State Fairgrounds' Varied Industries Building in Des Moines from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesday, May 16.  

Senior drivers are encouraged to set up an appointment for the event by calling Dawn Hackleman at 515-237-3007 or emailing [email protected]. 

CarFit is a national educational program created by the American Society on Aging and developed in collaboration with the American Automobile Association, American Association of Retired Persons and American Occupational Therapy Association.  

Health professionals and trained volunteers will review 12 key areas with older drivers to ensure they "fit" their vehicle properly for maximum comfort and safety. A CarFit check takes approximately 20 minutes to complete.  

CarFit also provides information and materials on community-specific resources that enhance driver safety and mobility.  

Some of the discussion points during a CarFit event include: 

  • Mirror adjustments. Properly adjusting the vehicle’s mirrors can greatly minimize blind spots for drivers when changing lanes.
  • Good foot positioning on the gas and brake pedals. Drivers who reach with their toes to press the pedals can experience reduced reaction times and fatigue in their legs.
  • Position of the driver in relationship to the steering wheel. Drivers run the risk of serious injury if they are sitting closer than 10 inches to the steering wheel.

 Having a car that “fits” the older driver is important. While older drivers are often considered safer drivers because they are more likely to wear seat belts and less likely to speed or drink and drive, they are more likely to be seriously injured in a crash because their bodies are more fragile. Older drivers can improve their safety by ensuring their cars are properly adjusted for them. A proper fit in one's car can greatly increase not only the driver's safety, but also the safety of others.  




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